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Native Son

Native Son is a novel written by the American author Richard Wright. It tells the story of 20-year-old Bigger Thomas, a black youth living in utter poverty in a poor area on Chicago's South Side in the 1930s. While not apologizing for Bigger's crimes, Wright portrays a systemic inevitability behind them. Bigger's lawyer, Boris Max, makes the case that there is no escape from this destiny for his client or any other black American since they are the necessary product of the society that formed them and told them since birth who they were supposed to be. "No American Negro exists", James Baldwin once wrote, "who does not have his private Bigger Thomas living in his skull." Frantz Fanon discusses the feeling in L'expérience vécue du noir. "In the end", writes Fanon, "Bigger Thomas acts. To put an end to his tension, he acts, he responds to the world's anticipation." The book was a groundbreaking best seller. However, it was criticized by Baldwin and others as advancing Bigger as a stereotype, not a real character.

Twenty-year-old Bigger Thomas is a young black man living in one room with his brother Buddy, his sister Vera, their mother. A rat appears; the room turns into a maelstrom, after a violent chase, Bigger kills the animal with an iron skillet and terrorizes his sister Vera with the dead rat. She faints, Mrs. Thomas scolds Bigger, who hates his family because they suffer and he cannot do anything about it; that evening, Bigger has to see a white man, for a new job. Bigger's family depends on him, he would like to leave his responsibilities forever, but when he thinks of what to do, he only sees a blank wall. Bigger meets his friend, Gus. Bigger tells him that every time he thinks about whites, he feels something terrible will happen to him, they meet other friends, G. H. and Jack, plan a robbery. They are all afraid of attacking and stealing from a white man, but none of them wants to admit their concerns. Before the robbery and Jack go to the movies, they are attracted to the world of wealthy whites in the newsreel and feel strangely moved by the tom-toms and the primitive black people in the film, yet feel they are equal to those worlds.

After the film, Bigger returns to the poolroom and attacks Gus violently, forcing him to lick his blade in a demeaning way to hide Bigger's own cowardice. The fight ends any chance of the robbery's occurring, Bigger is vaguely conscious that he has done this intentionally; when he gets the job, Bigger does not know how to behave in Dalton's large and luxurious house. Mr. Dalton and his blind wife use strange words, they try to be kind to Bigger, but make him uncomfortable. Their daughter, enters the room, asks Bigger why he does not belong to a union, calls her father a "capitalist". Bigger does not know that word and is more confused and afraid to lose the job. After the conversation, Peggy, an Irish cook, takes Bigger to his room and tells him the Daltons are a nice family, but he must avoid Mary's Communist friends. Bigger has never had a room for himself before; that night, he meets her Communist boyfriend Jan.. Throughout the evening and Mary talk to Bigger, oblige him to take them to the diner where his friends are, invite him to sit at their table, tell him to call them by their first names.

Bigger does not know how to respond to their requests and becomes frustrated, as he is their chauffeur for the night. At the diner, they buy a bottle of rum. Bigger drives throughout Washington Park, Jan and Mary drink the rum and make out in the back seat. Jan departs, he is terrified someone. Just the bedroom door opens, Mrs. Dalton enters. Bigger is terrified she will sense him there. Frightened of the consequences if he, a black man, were to be found in Mary's bedroom, he silences Mary by pressing a pillow into her face. Mary claws at Bigger's hands while Mrs. Dalton is in the room, trying to alert Bigger that she cannot breathe. Mrs. Dalton approaches the bed, smells alcohol in the air, scolds her daughter, leaves; as Bigger removes the pillow, he realizes. Bigger starts thinking frantically, decides he will tell everyone that Jan, her Communist boyfriend, took Mary into the house that night. Thinking it will be better if Mary disappears as she was supposed to leave for Detroit in the morning, he decides in desperation to burn her body in the house's furnace.

Her body would not fit through the furnace opening, but after decapitating it, Bigger manages to put the corpse inside. He adds extra coal to the furnace, leaves the corpse to burn, goes home. Bigger's current girlfriend Bessie suspects him of having done something to Mary. Bigger goes back to work. Mr. Dalton has called Mr. Britten. Britten interrogates Bigger accusingly. Bigger relates the events of the previous evening in a way calculated to throw suspicion on Jan, knowing Mr. Dalton dislikes Jan because he is a Communist; when Britten finds Jan, he puts the boy and Bigger in the same room and confronts them with their conflicting stories. Jan offers him help. Bigger storms away from the Daltons', he decides to write a false kidnapping note when he discovers Mr. Dalton owns the rat-infested flat Bigger's family rents. Bigger slips the note under the Daltons' front door and returns to his room; when the Daltons receive the not

Sphericon

The sphericon is a solid that has a continuous developable surface with two congruent semi circular edges, four vertices that define a square. It is a member of a special family of rollers that, while being rolled on a flat surface, bring all the points of their surface to contact with the surface they are rolling on, it was discovered independently by carpenter Colin Roberts in the UK in 1969, by dancer and sculptor Alan Boeding of MOMIX in 1979, by inventor David Hirsch, who patented it in Israel in 1980. It may be constructed from a bicone with an apex angle of 90 degrees, by splitting the bicone along a plane through both apexes, rotating one of the two halves by 90 degrees, reattaching the two halves. Alternatively, the surface of a sphericon can be formed by cutting and gluing a paper template in the form of four circular sectors joined edge-to-edge; the surface area of a sphericon with radius r is given by S = 2 2 π r 2. The volume is given by V = 2 3 π r 3,exactly half the volume of a sphere with the same radius.

In 1969, Colin Roberts made a sphericon out of wood while attempting to carve a Möbius strip without a hole. In 1979, David Hirsch invented a device for generating a meander motion; the device consisted of two perpendicular half discs joined at their axes of symmetry. While examining various configurations of this device, he discovered that the form created by joining the two half discs at their diameter centers, is a skeletal structure of a solid made of two half bicones, joined at their square cross-sections with an offset angle of 90 degrees, that the two objects have the same meander motion. Hirsch filed a patent in Israel in 1980, a year a pull toy named Wiggler Duck, based on Hirsch's device, was introduced by Playskool Company. In 1999, Colin Roberts sent Ian Stewart a package containing two sphericon models. In response, Stewart wrote an article "Cone with a Twist" in his Mathematical Recreations column of Scientific American; this sparked quite a bit of interest in the shape, has been used by Tony Phillips to develop theories about mazes, is used as a logo and name by the Israeli research company Sphericon Ltd.

In 1979, modern dancer Alan Boeding designed his "Circle Walker" sculpture from two crosswise semicircles, a skeletal version of the sphericon. He began dancing with a scaled-up version of the sculpture in 1980 as part of an MFA program in sculpture at Indiana University, after he joined the MOMIX dance company in 1984 the piece became incorporated into the company's performances; the company's piece "Dream Catcher" is based around a similar Boeding sculpture whose linked teardrop shapes incorporate the skeleton and rolling motion of the oloid, a similar rolling shape formed from two perpendicular circles each passing through the center of the other. Sphericon construction animation at the National Curve Bank website. Paper model of a sphericon Make a sphericon Sphericon variations using regular polygons with different numbers of sides A Sphericon in Motion showing the characteristic wobbly motion as it rolls across a flat surface

Helen Cargill

Air Commandant Dame Helen Wilson Cargill, was a British nurse and Royal Air force officer. From 1948 to 1952, she was Matron-in-Chief of Princess Mary's Royal Air Force Nursing Service. Cargill was born on 1 October 1896, the daughter of William Cargill and his wife, Jane Elizabeth Murphy, they lived at 11 Cluny Avenue in Edinburgh. She was educated at Edinburgh. From 1919 to 1923, she trained as a nurse at a teaching hospital in London. In June 1923, Cargill joined, she was promoted to sister on 1 July 1926, to senior sister on 1 February 1939. During the interwar period, she served in the Middle East. Cargill saw active service during the Second World War, she was an acting matron as of June 1941. In the 1941 King's Birthday Honours, Cargill was appointed an Associate of the Royal Red Cross. From 1942 to 1944, she served in Aden. Following the Normandy Landings, she was matron of the RAF Hospital in France. From September 1944 to May 1945, the end of the war in Europe, she was matron of a hospital in Brussels, Belgium.

In the 1945 King's Birthday Honours, she was promoted to Member of the Royal Red Cross. Cargill returned to the United Kingdom after the end of the war and spent the rest of her military career as matron of the RAF Hospital in Matlock, Derbyshire; this was a psychiatric hospital. On 16 July 1948, she was appointed the Matron-in-Chief of Princess Mary's Royal Air Force Nursing Service. On 1 February 1949, when the women's forces were integrated into the British Armed Forces, she was granted the rank of air commandant, she was appointed a Commander of the Order of St John in June 1949, a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 1951 New Year Honours. Cargill retired from the military due to "medical unfitness for air force service" on 12 May 1952. Cargill died on 4 December 1969, aged 73, she was buried with her parents in Morningside Cemetery, close to their family home. The toppled gravestone lies in the south-west section. National Portrait Gallery entry

The Wasps

The Wasps is the fourth in chronological order of the eleven surviving plays by Aristophanes, the master of an ancient genre of drama called'Old Comedy'. It was produced at the Lenaia festival in 422 BC, a time when Athens was enjoying a brief respite from the Peloponnesian War following a one-year truce with Sparta; as in his other early plays, Aristophanes pokes satirical fun at the demagogue Cleon, but in The Wasps he ridicules one of the Athenian institutions that provided Cleon with his power base: the law courts. The play has been thought to exemplify the conventions of Old Comedy better than any other play, it has been considered to be one of the world's greatest comedies; the play begins with a strange scene—a large net has been spread over a house, the entry is barricaded and two slaves and Sosias, are sleeping in the street outside. A third man is positioned at the top of an exterior wall with a view into the inner courtyard but he too is asleep; the two slaves wake and we learn from their banter that they are keeping guard over a'monster'.

The man asleep above them is their master and the monster is his father—he has an unusual disease. Xanthias and Sosias challenge the audience to guess the nature of the disease. Addictions to gambling and good times are suggested but they are all wrong—the father is addicted to the law court: he is a phileliastes or a "trialophile." We are told that his name is Philocleon and his son's name is the opposite of this—Bdelycleon. The symptoms of the old man's addiction are described for us and they include irregular sleep, obsessional thinking, poor hygiene and hoarding. We are told that counselling, medical treatment and travel have all failed to solve the problem and now his son has turned the house into a prison to keep the old man away from the law courts. Bdelycleon wakes and he shouts to the two slaves to be on their guard—his father is moving about, he tells them to watch the drains, for the old man can move like a mouse, but Philocleon surprises them all by emerging instead from the chimney disguised as smoke.

Bdelycleon is luckily on hand to push him back inside. Other attempts at escape are barely defeated; the household settles down for some more sleep and the Chorus arrives—old jurors who move warily, they are escorted by boys with lamps. Learning of their old comrade's imprisonment, they leap to his defense and swarm around Bdelycleon and his slaves like wasps. At the end of this fray, Philocleon is still in his son's custody and both sides are willing to settle the issue peacefully through debate; the debate is between the father and the son and it focuses on the advantages that the old man derives from voluntary jury service. Philocleon says he enjoys the flattering attentions of rich and powerful men who appeal to him for a favourable verdict, he enjoys the freedom to interpret the law as he pleases since his decisions are not subject to review, his juror's pay gives him independence and authority within his own household. Bdelycleon responds to these points with the argument that jurors are in fact subject to the demands of petty officials and they get paid less than they deserve—revenues from the empire go into the private treasuries of men like Cleon.

These arguments have a paralysing effect on Philocleon. The Chorus is won over. Philocleon however is still not able to give up his old ways just yet so Bdelycleon offers to turn the house into a courtroom and to pay him a juror's fee to judge domestic disputes. Philocleon agrees and a case is soon brought before him—a dispute between the household dogs. One dog accuses the other dog of stealing a Sicilian cheese and not sharing it. Witnesses for the defense include a pestle, a cheese-grater, a brazier and a pot; as these are unable to speak, Bdelycleon says a few words for them on behalf of the accused and some puppies are ushered in to soften the heart of the old juror with their plaintive cries. Philocleon is not softened but his son fools him into putting his vote into the urn for acquittal; the old juror is shocked by the outcome of the trial—he is used to convictions—but his son promises him a good time and they exit the stage to prepare for some entertainment. While the actors are offstage, the Chorus addresses the audience in a conventional parabasis.

It praises the author for standing up to monsters like Cleon and it chastises the audience for its failure to appreciate the merits of the author's previous play. It praises the older generation, evokes memories of the victory at Marathon, bitterly deplores the gobbling up of imperial revenues by unworthy men. Father and son return to the stage, now arguing with each other over the old man's choice of attire, he is addicted to his old juryman's cloak and his old shoes and he is suspicious of the fancy woollen garment and the fashionable Spartan footwear that Bdelycleon wants him to wear that evening to a sophisticated dinner party. The fancy clothes are forced upon him and he is instructed in the kind of manners and conversation that the other guests will expect of him. Philocleon declares his reluctance to drink any wine—it causes trouble, he says—but Bdelycleon assures him that sophisticated men of the world can talk their way out of trouble and so they depart optimistically for the evening's entertainment.

There is a second parabasis, in which the Chorus touches on a conflict between Cleon and the author, after which a household slave arrives with news for the audience about the old man's appalling behavi

Paul Turner (rugby player)

Paul Turner is a former Wales international rugby union player and the former head coach of Welsh regional side Newport Gwent Dragons. Turner was born in Newbridge, still holds the Newbridge points scoring record of 405 points from season 1983-84 and still remains the only back capped from Newbridge RFC. An outside-half, he was a prolific goal-kicker and is the joint record points holder for Newport RFC, he played for Pontypool, Newbridge and Sale FC. He played for the Barbarians invitational side three times. Turner represented the Crawshays and the Penguins at the Hong Kong Sevens in 1985, 87 and 88 respectively. Turner left Newport RFC and became player/coach at Sale FC in 1992, leaving in 1996 to join Bedford RFC as player/Head Coach, taking both clubs into the English Premiership during his tenure. In 1998/99 he joined Saracens as backs coach and spent 2 seasons at Rugby Lions as player/coach, winning promotion to Division 1. In 2001 he left Rugby Lions to work under Philippe Saint-André at Gloucester, winning the inaugural Premiership Grand Final.

He moved on to Harlequins as backs coach from 2002-05. In 2005 he was appointed head coach for the Newport Gwent Dragons and he stepped down in February 2011, he was Magners league coach of the year for the 2010 season. In July 2011 he was appointed attack and skills coach at Wasps He is Head Coach at National 1 side Ampthill RFC. Turner founded his own rugby consultancy business "Paul Turner Rugby" in April 2012 and worked as a rugby consultant on the grassroots rugby programme "Inside Welsh Rugby". In 2014, he rebranded the company as "Paul Turner Sport", offering additional services to complement his coaching. Newport Gwent Dragons profile Welsh Rugby Union profile ESPN Rugby Union Profile

It's a Funky Thing to Do

It's a Funky Thing to Do is the eleventh album led by saxophonist Hank Crawford, released on the Cotillion label in 1971. AllMusic awarded the album 2½ stars stating "Crawford plays well, as usual but, other than "Parker's Mood," none of the seven selections are memorable nor do they stand out from the crowd". All compositions by Hank Crawford except as indicated "It's a Funky Thing to Do" - 3:34 "If Ever I Should Leave You" - 4:34 "Hills of Love" - 5:19 "Sophisticated Soul" - 4:39 "You're the One" - 4:21 "Parker's Mood" - 6:25 "Kingsize Man" - 5:57 Hank Crawford - alto saxophone Richard Tee - piano Pee Wee Ellis - electric piano Eric Gale, Cornell Dupree - guitar Chuck Rainey - electric bass Ron Carter - bass Bernard Purdie - drums